Types of Missiles in India - Indian Missile List with Range and Speed

By K Balaji|Updated : October 26th, 2022

Different types of missiles in India come in diverse classes adapted for multi-purposes. They can be launched as surface-to-air, surface-to-surface and air-to-surface, air-to-air, and anti-satellite weapons missiles. India’s missile strategy serves several purposes in India’s defense strategy. Indian missiles have pushed the country to produce longer-range ballistic missiles and to diversify its delivery platforms above mobile land-based missiles.

In the modern era, India is evolving ship- and sub-launched ballistic missiles and has cooperated with Russia on developing cruise missile of India to stand as a strong nation. The types of missiles in India have system components like targeting or missile guidance, engine, flight system, and warhead. In this article, read about the types of missiles in India, the missile man of India, the latest Indian missile list, and more.

Table of Content

Types of Missiles in India

The use of missiles for wars were witnessed during the 18th century in India. A rocket or missile is a guided, self-propelled flying weapon usually driven by a warrior jet engine or rocket motor.

Missiles in India PDF

There are broadly 7 types of missiles in India.

  • Ballistic Missile Defence (BMD)/Interceptor Missiles
  • Air-to-air missiles AAM
  • Surface-To-Air Missiles – SAM
  • Surface-to-surface missiles
  • Anti-Tank Missiles
  • Submarine Launched Ballistic Missiles
  • Cruise Missiles

Indian Missile List 2022 - Names and Characteristics

Listed are the types of missiles in India which are either used by Indian armed forces or presently at various phases of development:

Air-to-Air Missile of India (AAM)

An air-to-air missile (AAM) is fired from an airplane to eliminate another plane. AAMs are powered by one or more rocket engines and are largely solid-fueled or occasionally liquid-fueled.

Name of the Missile

Missile of India

Operative Range

Speed

MICA

Air-to-Air

500 m to 80 km

Mach 4

Novator K-100

Medium Range

300–400 km

Mach 3.3

Astra

Air-to-Air

80-110 km

Mach 4.5 +

Solid Fuel Ducted Ramjet

Beyond visual range missile air-to-air missile

350 km

Mach 4.5

Surface-To-Air Missile of India (SAM)

A surface-to-air missile (SAM), also referred to as surface-to-air guided weapon (SAGW) or a ground-to-air missile (GTAM), is a rocket invented to be projected from the ground to eradicate airplanes or other projectiles. It is one category of anti-aircraft approach.

Name of the Missile

Missile of India

Operative Range

Speed

Trishul (missile)

Short range surface to air missile

9 km

Mach 1+

VL-SRSAM

Short range surface to air missile

50 km

-

QRSAM

Quick reaction surface to air missile

30 km

-

Maitri (missile)

Quick reaction surface to air missile

30 km

-

XR-SAM

Long range surface to air missile

350 km

-



Barak 8 Missile of India :

Name of the Missile

Missile of India

Operative Range

Speed

MRSAM

Medium range surface to air missile

70 km

Mach 2+

LRSAM

Long range surface to air missile

100 km

Mach 2+

Akash Missile of India:

Name of the Missile

Missile of India

Operative Range

Speed

Akash Mk I

Medium range surface to air missile

30 km

Mach 2.8-3.5

Akash Mk II

Medium range surface to air missile

40 km

Mach 2.8-3.5

Akash-NG

Medium range surface to air missile

70 km

Mach 2.8-3.5

Surface-to-Surface Missile of India

A surface-to-surface missile is launched from the ground to hit the ground or sea targets. It may be fired from hand-held automobiles, ships, or ground structures.

Name of the Missile

Speed

Operative Range

Agni-I

Mach 7.5

700-1250 km

Agni-II

Mach 12

2,000–3,000 km

Agni-III

5–6 km/s

3,500 km – 5,000 km

Agni-IV

Mach 7

3,000 – 4,000 km

Agni-V

Mach 24

5000 – 8000 Km

Agni-VI

-

12,000 to 16,000 km

Prithvi I

150 km

Prithvi II

350 km

Dhanush

350 – 600 km

Shaurya

750 to 1,900 km

Prahaar

150 km

Pralay

-

500 km

Cruise Missile of India

A cruise missile is a rocket missile against terrestrial or naval targets that stays in the atmosphere and passes the major part of its aviation path at a roughly consistent speed.

Name of the Missile

Missile of India

Operative Range

Speed

Nirbhay

Subsonic cruise missile

1,000 -1500 km

Mach 0.9

BrahMos-II

Hypersonic cruise missile

600–1,000 km

Mach 8

BrahMos Cruise Missile of India:

Name of the Missile

Missile of India

Operative Range

Speed

BrahMos Block I

Land-attack cruise missile

290 km

Mach 3

BrahMos Block II

Anti-ship cruise missile

290 km

Mach 3

BrahMos Block III

Land-attack cruise missile

290 km

Mach 3

BrahMos ER

Multirole supersonic cruise missile

600 km

Mach 3

BrahMos-A

Anti-ship cruise missile

400 km

Mach 3

Submarine launched BrahMos

Land-attack cruise missile

290 km

Mach 3

BrahMos NG

Multirole supersonic cruise missile

290 km

Mach 3

Ballistic Defence Missile of India

Missile defense is a weapon, system, or technology applied in bombarding missiles' detection, tracking, interception, and devastation. A missile defense system (MDS) is a mechanism that can detect and then eliminate a missile before it can generate any damage.

Phase I of Indian Ballistic Missile Defence Programme:

Name of the Missile

Type of Missile

Operative Range

Speed

Prithvi Defence Vehicle

Exo-atmospheric anti-ballistic missile

2,000 km

-

Advanced Air Defence

Endo-atmospheric anti-ballistic missile

150 km

Mach 4.5

Prithvi Air Defence

Exo-atmospheric anti-ballistic missile

300 km

Mach 5+

Phase II of Indian Ballistic Missile Defence Programme:

Name of the Missile

Type of Missile

Operative Range

AD-1

Anti-ballistic missile

TBA

AD-2

Anti-ballistic missile

TBA

Prithvi Defence Vehicle Mark-II

Exo-atmospheric anti-ballistic missile

-

Submarine Launched Ballistic Missile of India

A SLBM or submarine-launched ballistic missile is a ballistic missile competent of being established from submarines. The latest variants usually supply countless independently targetable reentry vehicles (MIRVs).

Name of the Missile

Operative Range

Speed

Ashwin

150-200km

Mach 4.5

K-4

3,500–5,000 km

Sagarika

700 – 1900 Km

K-5

6,000 km

K-15 (Sagarika)

750 km

K-6

6,000 to 8,000 km

Anti-Tank Missile of India

ATGMs are primarily created to hit and destroy armored military vehicles laboriously. These are ‘fire-and-forget’ missiles where the operator can retreat right after firing as no more guidance is required.

Nag (missile):

Name of the Missile

Type of Missile

Operative Range

MPATGM

Man-portable anti-tank missile

2.5 km

Stand off Anti-Tank missile

Standoff Air-launched ATGM

20 km

HeliNa/Dhruvastra

Air-launched ATGM

10 km

Prospina

Third generation land-attack ATGM

4 km

Amogha missile:

Name of the Missile

Operative Range

Speed

Man portable Amogha

Man-portable anti-tank missile

Air-launched Amogha

Air-launched anti-tank missile

Amogha-1

Second generation anti-tank guided missile

2.8 km

Important Missiles in India

Below are the Indian missiles still under development or being tested for their use in the near future.

Name of the Missile

Missile of India

Operative Range

Warhead

Rudram-1

Anti-radiation

250 km

Conventional

Prithvi Defence Vehicle Mark II

Anti-satellite

1,200 km

Kinetic kill vehicle

NASM-SR

Anti-ship

55+ km

Conventional or nuclear 100 kg

SMART

Anti-submarine

643+ km

Conventional 50 kg

Key Facts about Missiles in India

  • Tessy Thomas is the Missile Woman of India. She is the General Director of Aeronautical Systems and an Indian scientist and is known to be the one-time Project Director for Agni-IV missile in DRDO.
  • In 1983, IGMDP, or the Integrated Guided Missile Development Program, was established.
  • This program was undertaken with a plan to design five rocket approaches in India – Akash, Prithvi, Trishul, Nag, and Agni.
  • The first ever developed missile used by the Indian Air Force, Prithvi II is a single-stage missile which comes under the liquid fuelling type, having maximum warhead mounting capacity of 500 kg and a range of 250 km.
Important Notes for UPSC
Companies Act 2013Vedic Period
Pardoning Power of GovernorDAY NRLM Scheme
Maneka Gandhi vs Union of IndiaJurisdiction of Supreme Court

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FAQs on Types of Missiles in India

  • The types of missiles in India are:

    • Ballistic Missile Defence (BMD)/Interceptor Missiles
    • Cruise Missiles
    • Submarine Launched Ballistic Missiles
    • Antitank Missiles
    • Air-to-air missiles AAM
    • Surface-to-surface missiles
    • Surface-To-Air Missiles – SAM
  • There are five types of Indian missiles, air-to-air, air-to-surface, surface-to-air, antiship, and antitank, or assault. Ballistic missiles are often intercontinental, intermediate-range, short-range, and medium-range.

  • Prithvi was the first Missile of India. The Indian Government founded the Integrated Guided Missile Development Program in 1983 to obtain autonomy in designing and building a wide range of missiles.

  • Agni-V is India's most potent Missile, a nuclear-capable intercontinental ballistic missile developed by DRDO. The Missile is predicted to range around 5,000 to 5,500 kilometers

  • Tessy Thomas, Director General of Aeronautical Systems and an Indian scientist is the Missile Woman of India. She is the former Director for the Agni-IV Missile project.

  • India has six different types of ballistic missiles; these include

    • Agni-I
    • Agni-II
    • Agni-III
    • Agni-IV
    • Agni-V
    • Agni-P 
    • Army's variant of the Prithvi missile family – the Prithvi-I.
  • Avul Pakir Jainulabdeen Abdul Kalam is famous as the missile man of India. He was a remarkable Indian scientist who performed in India’s missile Technology and nuclear weapons agendas.

  • The cruise missiles in India are

    • BrahMos - Supersonic cruise missile
    • BrahMos II - Hypersonic cruise missile
    • Nirbhay - Subsonic cruise missile.

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